facebookvideoThe acceleration of mobile video consumption is a global phenomenon and the massive growth rate of the mobile and tablet video viewership is impressive, representing now more than 20% of all online video plays.

According to a recent study of the video technology company Ooyala, mobile video watching went up 532 percent in the past two years, and smartphones and tablets are certainly playing the key role in this paradigm shift of content availability. Interestingly that eMarketer stated in a current report that although it is in some ways well established, video marketing is still new to many marketers and constantly evolving for the experienced ones.

In fact, Facebook’s latest move confirms just that. Many marketers are already using Facebook’s impressive reach to their own advantage, but the social network giant now seems to focus more and more on video marketing. Right now, the company is still testing the feature that is extending the reach of its auto-play video ads into brands’ own pages, running via the company's iPhone app. Videos uploaded and posted to brands’ pages that way are imitating the same auto-play experience as the premium-priced ad offers.

With more than 1.2 billion active users and loads of money for their own shopping tours, Facebook makes clear that they will be constantly evolving and not be disappearing anytime soon.

Without much doubt the ad deal with Starcom MediaVest Group last month spurred the company’s activity, having used Facebooks video spots’ new interactive components, which will drive more views for brands.

Of course, the social network’s huge amount of data to target potential customers comes into play here too, making Facebook’s new offer extremely attractive. Now brands can create standard video ads—not to be confused with Facebook's premium auto-play spots—with a “video views” option, designed to show commercials to the users which are actually most likely to watch them. But the options are unlimited: Marketers can target consumers who have watched their content before, or ads can be created specifically for influencers, and videos can include a call-to-action such as a link to more content on a brand’s website, and so on. Facebook itself compared its video reach to traditional broadcast TV in its blog, saying it offers brands predictable audience sizes and control over how many times their commercials could run.

Facebook just stated last week that it is giving users a choice in the ads they see by rolling out an ad preferences feature that lets users learn why they’re being served a particular ad and giving them the option to adjust their ad preferences according to topics of interest.

We’ll see how that goes, since Facebook still has to deal with brands who have accused the social network of altering the code behind the organic News Feed to force ad buyers into purchasing ads.

Fact is that highly targeted video opportunities can be pure gold for brands looking to become a permanent fixture in the social conversation.

By Daniela La Marca